North Star Expands Eastward

    GRAND RAPIDS — North Star Public Relations announced that the company has established a Detroit bureau with operations based in Farmington Hills.

    The Detroit office will be headed by public relations veteran Lee Ann Welsh, most recently vice president with John Bailey & Associates, who will serve as vice president and Detroit bureau chief for North Star.

    Founded in 1999, North Star Public Relations serves approximately 30 clients out of its Grand Rapids headquarters. Leading clients include the University of Phoenix, United Bank of Michigan, Valspar Corp., Guardsman Furniture Pro, Global Forex Trading, Crystal Flash Energy and Paragon Die & Engineering.

    “The Detroit bureau is opening primarily because we were fortunate enough to persuade a professional the caliber of Lee Ann Welsh to join the company,” said Dan Calabrese, president and CEO of North Star.

    “Detroit is a tough, competitive market, and we would not have even considered entering it without an outstanding, experienced professional who knows not only the automotive scene but the entire Southeast Michigan market extremely well. As we have done in Grand Rapids, we expect to build a solid Detroit team that can compete with anyone and provide outstanding value to clients.”

    Calabrese and Welsh were colleagues at Detroit-based Franco Public Relations Group in the mid-1990s.

    Prior to joining North Star, Welsh served as vice president at Troy-based John Bailey & Associates, where she served clients such as the Delphi Corp., the North American International Auto Show, the Society of Automotive Engineers and Visteon Corp.

    Before her tenure with the Bailey firm, Welsh served as public relations manager at FANUC Robotics in Rochester Hills. She began her career at Franco Public Relations Group in Detroit.

    Welsh holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Wayne State University and is a member of the Public Relations Society of America and the Automotive Press Association.           

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